World AIDS Day, Durex Observatory: less than one in two young people always use a condom

TOhis stay World AIDS Dayon December 1, the data obtained from theYouth and Sexuality Observatory were carried out by Durex in cooperation with seem even more current and urgent: less than one young person in two (43.4%) always uses a condom and more than 50% of young people cannot recognize it Sexually Transmitted Infections (STDs). We discussed it with Laura Savarese of Durex to tell us about the brand’s commitment to raising sexual awareness among young people

The increase of Sexually Transmitted Infections among young people reminds us how sex education represents an increasingly urgent issue. Especially in Italy, one of the few countries in the European Union – along with Cyprus, Bulgaria, Poland, Romania and Lithuania – that have not officially included an emotional and sexual education program in schools.

The data emerging from the Youth and Sexuality Observatory conducted by Durex in collaboration with are alarming: less than one in two young people (43.4%) always use a condom, 62.5% of respondents rely on abstinence and over 39.3% consider it an effective method against unwanted pregnancies and STDs.

But not only that: among young people there is a low perception of the risk of contracting an STD. More than 50% of young people do not know how to recognize them and 63.2% of young people state that they have never visited a gynecologist or an andrologist.

The Durex “Lights On” Program

Faced with this photo and the clear demand of young people to have sex education in school (94%), Durex decided to continue the emotional and sexual education program “A Luci Accese” again this year.

Made in collaboration with ALA MILANO ONLUSa non-profit association committed to protecting people’s health and promoting well-being, the project is funded by the Municipality of Milan and has already been active in Milan schools since October with the support of specialist educators, psychologists and sexologists/sexologists.

We discussed it with Laura SavareseHead of Regulatory and Head of External Relations at Durex Italia.

How was the project “A Luci Accese” born and who is it aimed at?

Sexual education: the project


Sexual education: the project “A Luci lit” returns to the schools of Milan

“A Luci Accese” is the name we have given to all our educational initiatives, with which we want to stimulate reflection in the field of emotional and sexual education, especially among younger people. This year the “A Luci Accese” program is slightly different compared to previous years and is exclusively addressed to high schools in Milan, where we offer courses – all completely free – on emotional and sexual topics together with ALA Milano Onlus. With this association we have created a path that addresses all the classic topics of sex education – from how our bodies and those of others work, to what a relationship is and how a pregnancy develops, to what contraception means and how to avoid STDs.

Your project also aims to raise awareness not only about sex education, but also about emotional education. How does he do it?

Recent incidents of sexual violence among very young boys show us that it is necessary to raise awareness about emotional education as well. For this reason, this year we focused on an important topic: consent. We realize that unfortunately this is an issue that we need to stimulate deep reflection on. Today, in the Indo-demic we are immersed in, we talk about it a lot, but badly: it feeds the confusion, and in fact, if interviewed, young people show that they do not understand what it really consists of. For Durex, emotional education is not just about imparting concepts, but the real goal is to encourage cultural evolution. Not only through the youth, but also through their reference adults. For this reason, this year we also extended the target to teachers and parents: to educate a child you also need to focus on the context that welcomes them.

What reaction have you seen among parents?

Many parents still keep a safe distance from the subject, but some have a desire to help their children with these issues, they just don’t know where to start. So we are proud to have decided to extend our way to parents and teachers too, so that children learn at school, but also feel supported when they return home. The course is offered to schools as a complete package, we meet with parents and teachers before the lessons start and then continue to meet with them throughout the course to experience the children’s development together.

How is the “A Luci Accese” trip structured?

The course is structured in an innovative way, as it does not include frontal lessons, but small, more intimate contexts, especially for the first grades – therefore children between 14 and 15 years old, who in previous versions were excluded because they were too young. Today, however, they also participate through ALA trainers in small and intimate groups, where they can feel safe and welcome and where they can open up to talk about experiences but also about fears and insecurities. According to ALA psychologists, many of these children have many questions that they don’t know who to ask. For older children, however, the program offers conferences followed by focus groups focusing on the topic of consent.

What is the feedback from the children?

The results are very positive. At the end of each lesson the instructors ask the children to write their comments on slips that can remain anonymous: some are really moving. They thank us for making them discover so many things, they feel involved, safe, free to express themselves.

How is your Observatory an important tool for understanding the needs of younger children?

This is a survey we conduct every year with the portal, targeting young people between the ages of 11 and 24, with the aim of getting an insight into their level of sexual awareness and habits. The number of young people answering the survey is amazing: around 15,000 young people volunteer their valuable time in our 50-question survey. From the survey we get many facts, some of them shocking: in fact, the percentage of young people between the ages of 11 and 13 who say they have already had sex is constantly increasing. This year it is even 11.6%. At the same time, however, more than half report that they have never discussed sex in the family. This means that before having sex they were informed through other sources, such as the internet, where we are likely to have come across fake news and porn videos. But porn provides no information about contraception and creates a completely distorted expectation of intercourse, which is understood as a performance. We want to try to intercept these young people before they reach inadequate sources like these. At Durex we strongly believe in the project “A Luci Accese”: if we can make children feel welcome and free to ask and express themselves, they will experience a more peaceful sexuality. And the educated children of today will be the healthy and aware adults of the future.

Other Durex initiatives

In addition to the “A Luci Accese” program, Durex also provides information through other channels: on social media, in particular, with a Tiktok column exclusively dedicated to the topic and on television through the partnership with X Factor.

Durex is in fact teaming up with X Factor 2023 again this year with the aim of continuing to raise awareness among young people through music. In particular, during the episodes of the Fremantle-produced Sky Original show – every Thursday on Sky and streaming on NOW – there are some moments dedicated to the project “A Luci Accese”. Then on November 26, the brand took part in the Mixtapesan exclusive Durex and X Factor event which featured the sex education program and during the evening all the contestants who competed on the program appeared live.

Finally, on the occasion of World AIDS Day, in the episode of November 30 at 21.15 on Sky Uno and streaming on NOW (and then always available on demand), a special mention will be made of the brand and the educational program “A Luci Accese’ with reference to the importance of prevention in everyone’s life.

Leave a Comment